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Curl ESP looking forward to Scotties 2023

Posted: April 7, 2021

 
Curl ESP looking forward to Scotties 2023

 
 L - R:  Tracy Fleury - Skip, Selena Njegovan - Third, Liz Fyfe - Second and Kristin MacCuish - Lead
 

What a difference a year makes.

Around this time one year ago, the East St. Paul Curling Club was looking forward to announcing it would host the 2021 Scotties Tournament of Hearts.

Instead, they went on a rollercoaster ride of emotions as they, along with Curl Manitoba, community volunteers and members of the East St. Paul council, did all they could to save the prestigious event from falling victim to COVID-19. Of course, they couldn’t.

But now, Kim Link, who was Co-Chair of the 2021 East St. Paul host committee, along with Deb Palson, has good news.

"Curl ESP is very excited to be confirmed as the host for the 2023 Scotties to be held the last weekend of January in 2023,” Link said.

"We are also excited to have the extra time to refocus and re-energize our efforts to put forth an exciting event for the East St. Paul community!”

News of the Scotties return is uplifting, but Link acknowledged how difficult the past year has been.

"The past months have been very trying in all ways for everyone,” Link said.

"Looking back it was inevitable that this year’s Scotties would not be held.”

At the time, however, the ESP club showed its mettle, and its flexibility, by adapting and being willing to do whatever it took to host the women’s championship.

Originally set to be held in the East St. Paul Arena, the announcing of East St Paul as the host community was delayed from spring of 2020 until late that year. And the event was moved to the curling club, with the realization that crowds would not be part of the championship. It was moved one more time, to Selkirk to share the ice with the men’s championship, before being cancelled outright in January of this year.

Craig Baker, Executive Director with Curl Manitoba, praised the ESP club members for their dedication to the Scotties and consulted with them on when they would like to host next. Ultimately, Carberry will host the next Scotties at an earlier date due to it being an Olympic year. Selkirk, the planned host city for the men’s 2021 championship, has agreed to host the men in January 2022.

"Although they understood and were supportive, we know that the Selkirk and East St. Paul committees were disappointed by the need to cancel this year’s championships,” Baker said.

"It was appropriate for us to consult with them both on their wishes going forward.” Link said she’s proud of all who stepped up to try and make the 2021 Scotties happen and looking forward to hosting the women in 2023.

"I’m proud of the effort by our committee to forge ahead with alternative plans that were always changing, but it was a relief when Curl Manitoba made their decision early in December,” Link said.

"Our plan now reverts to the original one, to host this event in the arena and make it a great celebration. We would also like to thank the Mayor and councillors for being so supportive and flexible with all of these plans.”

A call for volunteers will go out next winter.

 

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